Albuquerque, N.M., CIO Peter Ambs has departed that position to become the assistant CIO in Phoenix. In his new role, Ambs serves alongside Phoenix CIO Matthew Arvay, who assumed that role in January 2017.
In his seven years with New Mexico’s largest city, Ambs was a productive tech leader. Recently he was selected as one of Government Technology’s Top 25 Doers, Dreamers & Drivers. He held the top tech exec position in Albuquerque dating back to January 2011. Ambs brought an MBA and an extensive background in private-sector tech work to the city, after having also served as state CIO for New Mexico from 2003 to 2005.
In his lengthy tenure in Albuquerque, Ambs led the digitization of business processes and internal workflows, the creation of apps for several city departments, mobile 311 functionality for citizen requests, and a range of other smart city projects. In Ambs’ time as CIO, Albuquerque emerged as a nationwide leader in smart city projects, doing work in a wide range of areas, from collecting data about soil moisture in parks to preparing the city for 5G connectivity.
“The work has always been about creating value,” Ambs said in a phone call with Government Technology in March, “not so much just implementing technology.”
Albuquerque’s website currently still lists Ambs as the city’s top tech executive, but the city has posted a job opening for a director of technology and innovation, along with a description that sounds similar — if not identical — to the CIO spot formerly held by Ambs. Long Beach, Calif., recently transitioned from having a formal CIO position this year to having a director of technology and innovation as well. An email requesting comment from Albuquerque Mayor Tim Keller’s office on the title change was not immediately answered.